Avoiding Hibernation: Unique Ideas to Get Through Slow Leasing Season
Courtesy of RentPath
In many industries, slow season means it’s time to step back and take a breather. That is largely untrue in the apartment industry, as the slow season means apartment owners and leasing associates need to try even harder to secure leases and retain the residents they have. The rental boom of spring might give a false sense of accomplishment for your marketing strategy. A true test of how well your marketing strategy works is during the slow season, when it becomes increasingly difficult to meet your occupancy and revenue goals.
Here are some unique ideas to consider as rental traffic begins to slow down in late fall and winter:
Create a promotional event - If you’re low on occupancy and worried leasing season will end before you hit your numbers, you’re going to need a boost. Use social media to create a contest that your residents and prospective residents can participate in to win a hot new tech item, like the iPhone 7 or an iPad Pro. This is also a good time to remind residents about any referral bonuses you offer.
Create an old lead list - It’s easy to lose track of leads if you’re not using a lead management system. Have your leasing associates dig through their old emails for leads that just weren’t ready to lease yet. Start working through the list to try and catch someone still looking. This can be more successful than you think, as leads are often dismissed if the apartment searcher reveals that he or she is too many months away from a move.
Positive review campaign - You can’t incentivize people to post positive reviews, but you can encourage them to. If you want to close more leads, a proactive way to do so is through generating more positive reviews. Decisions nowadays are fueled by review sites more than ever before. Dig through your database of residents and identify happy residents. Send them a kindhearted note asking them for more feedback and encouraging them to share how they feel about the community on review sites.
Create a holiday to celebrate resident appreciation - Get all of your residents together for an event to show your appreciation for them. Prepare to promote referral rewards, social media contests or positive review campaigns at the event. The best thing you can do is create an event that encourages residents to invite their friends and family for some food and fun; that generates referrals which could help boost revenue and occupancy.
The slow season is no time to sit back. In fact, this is when many communities separate themselves from their competitors. While everyone probably had a solid spring, you might be able to surpass them all with a solid late fall and winter. Maintain your brand awareness by continuing to advertise and utilize the tips above, and you’ll be able to roar into traditional leasing season with a head of steam.